The Marthasville Board of Aldermen voted at its Jan. 18 meeting to raise the salaries of board members and the city’s mayor.
Beginning after municipal elections in April, salaries for members of the board will rise to $1,800 per year, an increase of $100. Marthasville’s mayor will be paid $2,700 per year, an increase of $700.
The pay increase passed with a 2-1 vote. East Ward Alderman Nick Lange and West Ward Alderman Christopher DeVore supported the change. West Ward Alderman Mike Kloeppel voted against the raises. East Ward Alderman Dan Grafrath was absent.
Kloeppel said he voted no because the board passed another salary increase in 2016.
“I just don’t think we needed to raise it at this point, since we just gave ourselves raises last year,” Kloeppel said. “I don’t think two raises that quick is in the best interest of tax payers.”
The March 2016 ordinance setting the board and mayors’ salaries at $1,700 and $2,000, respectively, was the first pay increase in a number of years, Kloeppel said, which is why he voted for it then. He said the city had budgeted for raises sooner, but never actually approved the increase.
Mayor David Lange said the pay raise in 2016 was an acknowledgement that money had been made available with that intent.
He said board members revisited the issue this soon because they researched the pay rates of other cities and saw that Marthasville was behind the average.
“We took averages of 15 other cities our size ... and we’re not even at half of what those 15 cities average,” Lange said.
That’s based on data the city of Marthasville requested from the Missouri Municipal League, including salaries from cities as large as Washington and Warrenton.
Seven of the cities examined are closer to the population and administration of Marthasville. Of those, the average salary of aldermen is $1,296, and $5,640 for mayors, according to data provided by Mayor Lange.
Comparing the new Marthasville salaries to the averages from those seven cities, aldermen will be making about 139 percent of the average and the mayor will make about 48 percent of the average.
Elected officials do not receive pay raises until they are re-elected. Aldermen Lange and DeVore won’t be eligible for the pay increase until 2018, if they are re-elected. Grafrath and Mayor Lange are running uncontested this year and will get raises after April 4. Kloeppel is not running for reeelection.